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Fortuna by Michael R. Stevens
Review by Joseph B. Hoyos
Oceanview Publishing Hardcover  ISBN/ITEM#: 9781933515779
Date: 01 May 2010 List Price $25.95 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Article /

The stress of being a grad student and a teaching assistant at Stanford University tempts Jason Lind to participate in the online simulation game of Fortuna. Jason, like millions around the globe, becomes addicted to this Medieval world of Florence, Italy where players are assigned the roles of impoverished citizens who must steal and kill in order to rise higher into the social hierarchy. Having become financially indebted to Fortuna Corporation, Jason drops out of Stanford and begs for a job at Global Packet Control (GPC) where his ingenious father, Nicholas Fibonacci, worked as the Chief Technological Officer. Soon Jason learns that there is a horrible connection between Fortuna, GBC, and the mysterious car accident that killed his father six years ago. This knowledge may cause the deaths of him and all his friends at Stanford.

From official release/information:

Product Description: Longing for escape from his mundane existence as a Stanford computer science major, Jason Lind signs up to play Fortuna, an online role-playing game set in Renaissance Florence. From the first, fateful mouse click, Jason tumbles into the vibrant, lush, anonymous world of Fortuna. Swept up in this highly complex, highly addictive game of fame, fortune, and power, Jason quickly transitions from casual gamer to compulsive player. Soon tangled up in a steamy virtual love triangle, Jason becomes obsessed with breaking Fortuna's code of anonymity. But Fortuna is anything but fun and games, and when a sizable debt incurred in the game spills over into reality, Jason is forced to leverage the legacy of his father, a high-tech legend killed in a car accident years before, to pay off the debt. What started as a great escape may only leave Jason trapped, as the game that transported Jason deep into the past exposes a shocking, present-day reality. In the world of Fortuna, it's not how you play the game; it's if you survive.

(Source: Oceanview Publishing)

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